What makes one successful? For aspiring chefs and food entrepreneurs, it entails having a high level of commitment, passion and hard work, plus clear career goals.
It also pays to gain inspiration from those who have chartered their course in the business, like chef Mitchie Sison and chef Winston Jerome Luna. Both young entrepreneur chefs, ambassadors of Fly Ace Corporation’s canned vegetable brand Jolly, have emerged to become two of the country’s brightest culinary talents, eager to share their personal journeys and proven recipes for success.
The commitment of chef Mitchie
For celebrity chef Mitchie, she began to explore and develop her culinary and entrepreneurial skills back in her teens. She started with baking and selling brownies in school and simply enjoying cooking at home or at her friend’s house.
Over time, her desire to be a professional cook led her to study hotel and restaurant management in De La Salle-College of Saint Benilde where she learned techniques and cooking principles. Chef Mitchie slowly but steadily solidified her career, working at an Australian ice cream franchise where she acquired a good grasp of professionalism, especially when it comes to customer service and store operations. However, her biggest career break came when she was chosen to be one of the chef hosts for a TV cooking show, Katoque, in the early 2000’s.
“It was an eye-opening experience for me to be put on the spotlight early in my career. It really motivated me to hone my craft more,” says chef Mitchie.
Currently a consultant for restaurants and food companies, Chef Mitchie proudly says her meaningful career stemmed from gained experiences and good professional relationships with colleagues in the industry.
”I’m very grateful for having supportive friends and industry leaders who believe in me. Many of them have been instrumental in opening opportunities that led to unforgettable milestones in my career,” she stresses. “Commitment, professionalism and staying true to your work standards are important in this industry. I’m also looking forward to launching my own food business by next year.”
The determination of chef Winston
Before becoming CEO of Chefwix Catering Services, chef Winston Jerome Luna began his career with a passion and determination to succeed. At age six, chef Winston was already tinkering with recipes in the kitchen, experimenting on snacks, main dishes and desserts which he happily served to his family.
However, his calling to pursue a culinary career came only after finishing his graduate studies, and he decided to take up formal culinary studies at the International School for Culinary Arts and Hotel Management.
“Being a professional chef is a destiny for me. As a chef, my goal is to constantly achieve perfection and excellence in everything I do; [professionalism] came spontaneously as a result of smart work, perseverance and commitment,” he says.
Besides his regular stints as a TV guest chef and along with his reputation of being one of the country’s most promising food entrepreneurs, chef Winston says he always cherishes the fulfilling rewards of his career and catering business.
“Creating magical moments is not easy. Marrying a masterfully crafted event with an exquisite dining experience is our commitment in delivering a memorable experience. Seeing happy faces and [hearing] joyful remarks lift us up and inspires us,” he remarks.
Both chefs also pinpoint grit, open-mindedness and having a humble disposition as key traits to have if one wishes to achieve long-term success in the food and cooking scene. For those venturing further into the food business, chef Winston advises them to build on their business knowledge to turn their passion and talent into a sustainable, commercial success.